General Prestige Class : Battle Scion

A battle scion has earned the right to fight with a particular legendary weapon, either because the weapon is an ancestral heirloom or because he upholds the principles for which the weapon was originally created. While characters of any class can eventually qualify for the battle scion class, those who wield weapons professionally - fighters, barbarians, rangers, and paladins - are ideal candidates.

No two battle scions are identical, by virtue of the weapons that grant them access to this prestige class. One scion might wield an heirloom weapon that provides him with the abilities needed to uphold the family's honor. Another could be the scourge of an evil temple, using his legendary sword to prove that might does indeed make right. Yet another could be wielding an axe, hammer, or staff dedicated to his profession, or to his race, with abilities that draw on the strengths thereof.

For all the powers his sword grants him, a battle scion isn't terribly different from any other fighter, barbarian, ranger, or paladin who uses his share of the treasure to upgrade his favorite weapon every so often. What really sets him apart is the fact that his weapon is leading him toward a particular destiny, if only by shaping his future advancement choices.


To qualify to become a battle scion, a character must fulfill the criteria given in his particular weapon's entry. (For an example, see Dragonblade, below.)

Class Features

The following are class features of the battle scion prestige class.

A legendary weapon associated with the class provides a unique set of additional special abilities, which are detailed in the weapon's description. (For an example, see Dragonblade, below.) These abilities accrue in addition to those already noted in the Special column below. However, because those abilities are functions of the weapon rather than the wielder, they are lost if the legendary weapon that granted them is lost. The features mentioned on the table below are retained even if the weapon is lost.

Bonus Feats: At 1st level, a battle scion receives a bonus feat. Thereafter, he gains an additional bonus feat at 4th, 7th, and 10th level. These bonus feats must be drawn from the list of feats noted as fighter bonus feats. A battle scion must still meet all prerequisites to take a bonus feat.

Battle ScionHit Die: d10
1st+1+2+0+0Bonus feat
4th+4+4+1+1Bonus feat
7th+7+5+2+2Bonus feat
10th+10+7+3+3Bonus feat


Reputedly carved from the fang of a great wyrm red dragon, the bastard sword known as Dragonblade has served many masters over the centuries, from bloodthirsty warlords to treasure seeking adventurers. It is a legendary weapon that provides many benefits to its wielder, but most of the benefits apply only if the wielder has levels in the battle scion prestige class.

Requirements: Any character can wield Dragonblade as a +2 bastard sword and also gain the benefit of the bravery special ability described below. A battle scion who wields Dragonblade gains additional special abilities if the character fulfills the following criteria.

Base Attack Bonus: +9.

Skills: Knowledge (arcana) 6 ranks.

Feats: Improved Critical (bastard sword), Iron Will.

Attributes: Dragonblade has the following attributes.

Hardness/Hit Points: 20/55.

Caster Level: 15th.

Value: To any character other than a battle scion who meets the above requirements, Dragonblade appears to be worth as much as a Medium +2 bastard sword that grants the bravery special ability (market price 14,335 gp).

Special Abilities: Dragonblade provides a number of special abilities to its wielder, depending on the character's class level in the battle scion prestige class (see the table below).

Initial Abilities: When first acquired, Dragonblade functions as a +2 bastard sword. Anyone who wields it, whether a battle scion or not, also benefits from the bravery ability (see below).

Abilities Granted by Dragonblade
Battle Scion LevelAbility Gained
1stBane (dragons)
2ndResistance to energy 10
3rdEnhancement bonus +3 (+5 against dragons)
4thIntimidating presence
5thResistance to energy 20
6thEnhancement bonus +4 (+6 against dragons)
7thDodge bonus
8thResistance to energy 30
9thFrightful presence
10thEnhancement bonus +5 (+7 against dragons)

Bravery (Ex): The wielder of Dragonblade has immunity to a dragon's frightful presence ability. All allies within 30 feet of the wielder gain a +4 morale bonus on saves against the frightful presence of dragons.

Bane (Dragons) (Su): When wielded by a battle scion, Dragonblade gains the bane (dragons) special ability. Its enhancement bonus is treated as 2 points higher when attacking a dragon, and it deals an extra 2d6 points of damage on a successful strike against a dragon.

Resistance to Energy (Su): Once per day, when a battle scion of 2nd level or higher wielding Dragonblade is dealt at least 1 point of damage from any type of energy (acid, cold, electricity, fire, or sonic), the scion gains resistance 10 to that form of energy for 1 hour thereafter (including against the damage that activated the ability). For example, if the scion were engulfed in a fireball, the resistance would immediately take effect, reducing the damage taken by the fireball (and any other source of fire damage for the next hour) by 10 points. Once the energy type is determined, it cannot be changed for the current use of the ability. If two or more types of energy strike the scion simultaneously, he may select the energy type against which his resistance protects. When a battle scion attains 5th level, the resistance granted by this ability increases to 20 points. Ar 8th level, it increases to 30 points.

Intimidating Presence (Ex): A battle scion of 4th level or higher wielding Dragonblade may add his class level as a bonus on Intimidate checks made against dragons (or one-half his class level as a bonus on Intimidate checks made against nondragons).

Dodge Bonus (Ex): At 7th level and higher, a battle scion wielding Dragonblade gains a +2 dodge bonus to Armor Class against creatures at least two size categories larger than himself.

Frightful Presence (Ex): A battle scion of 9th level or higher wielding Dragonblade can unsettle foes with his mere presence. This ability takes effect automatically whenever the scion attacks or charges. Creatures within a radius of 60 feet are subject to the effect if they have fewer Hit Dice than the scion's character level.

A potentially affected creature that succeeds on a Will save (DC 10 + class level + scion's Cha modifier) remains immune to that scion's frightful presence for one day. On a failure, creatures with 4 or less HD become panicked for 4d6 rounds and those with 5 or more HD become shaken for 4d6 rounds. Even dragons can be affected by the scion's frightful presence.

Source: Unearthed Arcana

General Prestige Classes